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Unread 06-12-2017, 07:06 PM   #1
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Default Social Anxiety build-up at work

Hello,

I always thought my anxiety was generalized, but until recently, I've noticed major changes in the way I view my coworkers. I am currently off on an extended sick leave for major depression and anxiety.

While I was at my job, however, I would always feel intimidated by my coworkers. The main intimidation was their ability to socialize. They all had some sort of a life, whereas for me it was always hard to get up every single day, go to work, and then do almost nothing when I got home because I was so tired. I didn't have energy to have a 'life', such as socializing with others. The only people I socialize with from time to time are my immediate family members.

Did anyone feel this way? Intimidated by the social crowd at work? I always felt like such an odd ball. Everyone else would spend their weekends at dinner parties, or going out to a movie, walking in the park, etc. I could not do such things, and upon reflection, it's probably because I was fighting the energy-sapping demon of depression/anxiety.
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Unread 06-12-2017, 08:12 PM   #2
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Default Re: Social Anxiety build-up at work

I have felt similar to you. Our team goes out to lunch every few weeks together. My coworkers talk about activities that they do during the week...classes, sports, happy hour, movies, socializing. It makes me feel out of place. I don't seem to have anything to share with them because I tend to be too drained on most days to commit to activities. I can't remember the last movie I went to see. The weekends are usually better for me.
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Unread 06-13-2017, 02:33 AM   #3
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Default Re: Social Anxiety build-up at work

I've experienced that my whole life. I don't trust people easily, am hyper-vigilant, don't like it when people walk up behind me or get too close to me. Meetings are stressful for me. I'm great at what I do, I just prefer to be left alone.

I have to admit, that after all of these years, I prefer to be left alone at work. I plug in and totally ignore the drama that is going on around me. Unfortunately, by boss is an ***** and I can't totally ignore him so our meetings are very stressful for me. On the plus side, he shows up late and takes long lunches so sometimes I can get through a whole day without having to talk to him.

I truly am the "odd person out". I don't fit into the group as a whole, but do have some pretty good working relationships in one-on-one conversations. Add more than one person to a discussion and I'm immediately uncomfortable.
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"I feel like an outsider, and I always will feel like one. Iíve always felt that I wasnít a member of any particular group."
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Unread 06-17-2017, 09:02 PM   #4
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Default Re: Social Anxiety build-up at work

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wunderland View Post
Hello,

I always thought my anxiety was generalized, but until recently, I've noticed major changes in the way I view my coworkers. I am currently off on an extended sick leave for major depression and anxiety.

While I was at my job, however, I would always feel intimidated by my coworkers. The main intimidation was their ability to socialize. They all had some sort of a life, whereas for me it was always hard to get up every single day, go to work, and then do almost nothing when I got home because I was so tired. I didn't have energy to have a 'life', such as socializing with others. The only people I socialize with from time to time are my immediate family members.

Did anyone feel this way? Intimidated by the social crowd at work? I always felt like such an odd ball. Everyone else would spend their weekends at dinner parties, or going out to a movie, walking in the park, etc. I could not do such things, and upon reflection, it's probably because I was fighting the energy-sapping demon of depression/anxiety.
I could have written this word for word. It will get better though. You just have to keep exposing yourself to social situations. And yeah, I can never talk about my personal life or family. But I've developed a list of topics that I can talk about that fit into the small talk area: my dogs, a popular TV show,a good book I just read, or I just listen, nod my head, and say "wow, that's sounds like so much fun, I'll have to try that some time." And they respond pretty well to that. It's possible to master the social situations of small talk without divulging anything about our scary pasts.

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Primary Dx: PTSD and Severe Chronic Treatment Resistant Major Depressive Disorder[/SIGPIC]
Secondary Dx: OCPD, Generalized Anxiety Disorder with mild Agoraphobia.

Meds I've tried: Prozac, Zoloft, Celexa, Effexor, Remeron, Elavil, Wellbutrin, Risperidone, Abilify, Prazosin, Paxil, Trazadone, Tramadol, Topomax, Xanax, Propranolol, Valium, Visteril, Vraylar, Selinor, Clonopin, Ambien

Treatments I've done: CBT, DBT, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), Talk therapy, psychotherapy, exercise, diet, sleeping more, sleeping less...
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Unread 06-18-2017, 02:44 AM   #5
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Default Re: Social Anxiety build-up at work

Quote:
Originally Posted by seesaw View Post
I could have written this word for word. It will get better though. You just have to keep exposing yourself to social situations. And yeah, I can never talk about my personal life or family. But I've developed a list of topics that I can talk about that fit into the small talk area: my dogs, a popular TV show,a good book I just read, or I just listen, nod my head, and say "wow, that's sounds like so much fun, I'll have to try that some time." And they respond pretty well to that. It's possible to master the social situations of small talk without divulging anything about our scary pasts.

Seesaw
Hi Seesaw,

I am not sure you fully understood my post, but anyhow......it was a kind gesture to offer advice. Thanks for that.

My frustration was mostly about feeling awkward around 'busy' people who had 'busy' lives after their jobs. I didn't have their energy level, and felt oddly out-of-place. It was not entirely about being socially anxious in a general sense. It was more about comparing my quiet lifestyle with busy-bees at my job. Do you know what I mean?

In general, my overall social skills seem to be intact with people that I know well in my life. And that's all that matters for now. I am not inept in social situations, btw. Upon reflection, most people at my job didn't realize I was shy until I told them...lolololol. I suppose my acting chops were in order in my previous career.
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Last edited by Wunderland; 06-18-2017 at 03:45 AM.
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Unread 06-18-2017, 02:58 AM   #6
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Default Re: Social Anxiety build-up at work

Quote:
Originally Posted by reb569 View Post
I've experienced that my whole life. I don't trust people easily, am hyper-vigilant, don't like it when people walk up behind me or get too close to me. Meetings are stressful for me. I'm great at what I do, I just prefer to be left alone.

I have to admit, that after all of these years, I prefer to be left alone at work. I plug in and totally ignore the drama that is going on around me. Unfortunately, by boss is an ***** and I can't totally ignore him so our meetings are very stressful for me. On the plus side, he shows up late and takes long lunches so sometimes I can get through a whole day without having to talk to him.

I truly am the "odd person out". I don't fit into the group as a whole, but do have some pretty good working relationships in one-on-one conversations. Add more than one person to a discussion and I'm immediately uncomfortable.
Hey thanks for relating and not patronizing the whole experience. I think you and I share similar thoughts.

I find one-to-one relationships very very easy, and extremely comfortable, depending on the person you converse with, obviously. Group situations can be good, but also depending on the people. I do prefer one-to-one.

I think I was just tired of hearing people talk about their 'busy' out-of-work lifestyle. Do this...do that...do that...do this. It was almost as hectic as work itself. ANd then when I reflected on it today, I realized that these people are probably a different make-up than I am. They are energizer bunnies with more energy to expend than the sun itself, to put it lightly. And I am not. I never was. I'm the slow turtle that gets things done steadily. If people are racing forward, well, I take another route. I do it my way and as slow as I need to. With depression and anxiety, it really slowed me down to a snail's pace. So, I'm dealing with fatigue, mostly, nowadays.

Thanks for the thoughtful reply.
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Unread 06-18-2017, 01:44 PM   #7
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Default Re: Social Anxiety build-up at work

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wunderland View Post
Hi Seesaw,

I am not sure you fully understood my post, but anyhow......it was a kind gesture to offer advice. Thanks for that.

My frustration was mostly about feeling awkward around 'busy' people who had 'busy' lives after their jobs. I didn't have their energy level, and felt oddly out-of-place. It was not entirely about being socially anxious in a general sense. It was more about comparing my quiet lifestyle with busy-bees at my job. Do you know what I mean?

In general, my overall social skills seem to be intact with people that I know well in my life. And that's all that matters for now. I am not inept in social situations, btw. Upon reflection, most people at my job didn't realize I was shy until I told them...lolololol. I suppose my acting chops were in order in my previous career.
I'm sorry, I did misunderstand. But I still understand what you are going through. My work is the same way. People ask what I did on the weekend, and I'm like I slept. That's what I did. And they had all these fun things they went and did.

I just don't have the energy to keep up.

I have no advice other than don't be judgmental or harsh on yourself. You have a disability, go easy on yourself.

Seesaw
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Primary Dx: PTSD and Severe Chronic Treatment Resistant Major Depressive Disorder[/SIGPIC]
Secondary Dx: OCPD, Generalized Anxiety Disorder with mild Agoraphobia.

Meds I've tried: Prozac, Zoloft, Celexa, Effexor, Remeron, Elavil, Wellbutrin, Risperidone, Abilify, Prazosin, Paxil, Trazadone, Tramadol, Topomax, Xanax, Propranolol, Valium, Visteril, Vraylar, Selinor, Clonopin, Ambien

Treatments I've done: CBT, DBT, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), Talk therapy, psychotherapy, exercise, diet, sleeping more, sleeping less...
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Unread 06-18-2017, 05:24 PM   #8
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Default Re: Social Anxiety build-up at work

Quote:
Originally Posted by seesaw View Post
I'm sorry, I did misunderstand. But I still understand what you are going through. My work is the same way. People ask what I did on the weekend, and I'm like I slept. That's what I did. And they had all these fun things they went and did.

I just don't have the energy to keep up.

I have no advice other than don't be judgmental or harsh on yourself. You have a disability, go easy on yourself.

Seesaw
Thank you so much, Seesaw. Any help is appreciated. I am inspired by you, that you are doing so well in your career. Never say never....(saying this to myself). I may go back to teaching one day, but not at my former school. Right now, I just want to focus on getting well again.

~ Wunderland
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Unread 06-19-2017, 01:53 PM   #9
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Default Re: Social Anxiety build-up at work

Is there an area you excel at socially? It is worth the competition to elevate your self esteem and maybe a long term goal? I know you said in general it is a problem but if you are going to work at it this would be a good opportunity to start some where.

I totally understand everything written here it was written quiet nicely!
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Unread 06-19-2017, 05:17 PM   #10
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Default Re: Social Anxiety build-up at work

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Is there an area you excel at socially? It is worth the competition to elevate your self esteem and maybe a long term goal? I know you said in general it is a problem but if you are going to work at it this would be a good opportunity to start some where.

I totally understand everything written here it was written quiet nicely!

Thanks so much for your reply.

I excel at public speaking and presentations, as that is what I did as a teacher...lol. But, thanks for asking. Yes, it's a confidence booster.
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